Ons Jabeur eliminates Mertens for Wimbledon quarter-finals

Ons Jabeur

Ons Jabeur

Ons Jabeur’s hopes of becoming the first African to win the Wimbledon singles title gathered momentum on Sunday as she edged out Belgian Elise Mertens 7-6(9) 6-4 to reach the quarter-finals for the second year running.

The second-ranked Tunisian, the only seed left in the bottom half of the women’s draw, has been the in-form player over the opening week of the grasscourt championships as she reached the last eight without dropping a set.

Mertens, however, was no pushover during the contest as she earned five set points during a marathon first-set tiebreak.

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But once Jabeur produced the firepower to wriggle out of trouble, she raised her game in the second set and wrapped up the win when Mertens surrendered with a double fault.

The 27-year-old will next meet 66th-ranked Czech challenger Marie Bouzkova as the Tunisian targets a place in the semi-finals of a Grand Slam for the first time.

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